The lifespan of a building can very much depend on the condition of its foundation. Without a good foundation in place, your home is unlikely to stand the test of time, and at the very least, will require multiple expensive repairs before it can be called a healthy, structurally sound building.
Natural disasters like floods and earthquakes can be devastating enough alone, but paired with a home with foundation problems it can become a tragedy. Protecting your home from these disasters is something you may have already considered, but many homeowners don’t think about how their foundation can impact this.
Many homeowners experience foundation problems, and want to know how bad it can truly be not to fix them immediately. Surely they can wait a few weeks, a few months, even a year? Unfortunately not.
Foundation repairs are a necessary expense, but many homeowners prefer to avoid these issues until they get really bad and the effects are noticeable. They tend to pick projects that make financial sense at the time but aren’t actually a priority, not realizing that these choices could cost them even more money in the long run – not to mention their health! Before you know it, a year has gone by and you still haven’t fixed your foundation problems – pretty soon you’ll notice some serious effects if you haven’t already, and you’ll definitely have some expensive repairs on your hands.
If you’re not yet thinking, ‘ok, I need to find some concrete services near me before things get worse!’ – read on to find out what happens if you neglect to fix these issues.
Why Do Foundation Problems Occur?
First, it’s important to know how these problems occur. Foundation problems can occur for a myriad of reasons. For instance, if your home is built on clay heavy soil that can expand/contract, this can cause your foundation to heave and sag. Low density soil tends to be able to move more than highly compacted soil. This puts the home under a lot of stress and it eventually cracks. It then loses its strength and integrity over time.
If the ground is not well compacted in the area you have chosen to build your home, there will always be a danger of foundation problems. Poor drainage also makes it hard for the soil to remain compact, too, and it is easily moved when the ground is shaken.
Other potential causes of foundation problems include:
- Deep roots that touch the foundation of your home, such as tree roots.
- Leaks from plumbing works and repairs that have not been carried out properly.
- A weak, uncertified foundation construction.
- Extreme heat accompanied by dry winds.
Being aware of the causes should help you to stay vigilant and ensure your foundation stays healthy and intact.
How do you know if your home has foundation problems?
Knowing what signs to look out for will help you to determine whether you have foundation problems on your hands or if something else is at play. When your home has foundation issues, you will likely notice one or more of the following issues:
- Sagging/sinking/uneven floors.
- Unpleasant odors that waft up from below.
- Mold or mildew infestations.
- Cracked chimneys.
- Basement draftiness.
- Bowing walls.
- Cracks in the walls, inside or outside, upstairs or downstairs.
- Doors and windows that won’t close properly or tend to stick.
To some, early stage foundation problems may seem more like an inconvenience than a crisis, but if you put it off you will experience far more issues in the long run. You could end up having to spend several thousand dollars if you leave your foundation problems to get worse!
You may not realize that issues like sticking doors and windows are serious, but they are just a symptom of an even bigger problem. Make sure you investigate as soon as you think you may be dealing with foundation problems.
If you don’t deal with your foundation problems right away, then you may need to deal with the following:
Escalating Repair Costs
The longer you leave your foundation problems, the more you will need to pay when you do decide to fix it. Leaving it alone will mean the slow decay of your home’s foundation. The most you can put this off for is a few weeks. If you leave it for too long, it will get worse and more expensive, and you will experience far more upheaval in the process. The quicker you address your foundation problems, the better for your wallet and your family.
Serious Plumbing Problems
Your plumbing becomes vulnerable with foundation issues. It is not unusual for homeowners to experience plenty of plumbing problems when also dealing with a shoddy foundation.
For instance, plumbing pipes can become intertwined in the foundation of the home and weave through their way into your house! Plumbing issues can also happen under your slabs and go unnoticed for years.
The shift that occurs in a home experiencing foundation issues can cause plumbing pipes to break, and then all kinds of trouble can break loose. Once your plumbing has burst, the water damage can be severe. Your home will likely have water damage, and potentially your belongings, too.
It can be difficult to correctly diagnose without a professional consultation, but if you suspect something is amiss then booking a consultation immediately is key. It can be expensive to fix as pipes tend to be difficult to access, but the sooner you have these issues looked at, the better.
Your Foundation Could Sink or Settle
Your foundation can move over time when it isn’t secure, and this can cause them to sink into the ground and become uneven. You may find that your floors are not level, and notice that things appear to have changed since you purchased the home. If you’ve noticed these issues in your own home, it’s particularly important to begin searching for ‘concrete installers near me’ before the issues get even worse.
Spreading Structural Damage
You don’t just have to worry about your foundation when you have foundation issues. The spreading structural damage can impact many different parts of your home. You will notice damage to your walls, floors, ceilings, wooden cross beams, upstairs walls, doors, window frames, attached garages, and other areas of your home.
Foundation problems can be a true disaster for the whole home, and if left untreated, things will begin falling apart fast!
Mold and Mildew Issues
Mold and mildew is unhealthy and has no place in the home. However, it can present itself when your home is facing foundation problems. Mold and mildew can cause the wooden pieces under your pier and beam home to rot and deteriorate. Plus, water can easily make its way through cracks and spaces when there is poor sealing, and this can create a toxic environment for the whole family.
Your family may start scratching, sneezing, wheezing, coughing and feeling sick and miserable when mold and mildew are present – this is because the issue results in poor air quality as fungi becomes airborne. Mold and mildew could easily trigger asthma, nasal stuffiness, and throat irritation, too. If you want to keep your family healthy then dealing with this quickly is imperative.
Devastating Water Damage
Wooden structural features are susceptible to water damage, and water damage is pretty much guaranteed once you notice cracks in your basement walls and foundation slabs. Water damage could not only happen to your home, but to your belongings, too! Talk about an expensive fix!
Insect and Rodent Infestations
Insects and rodents can easily find a way into your home if you don’t address your foundation problems fast. Pier and beam foundations that have crawl spaces are particularly susceptible, but pretty much any home with foundation problems can get an infestation due to the spaces that the problem can make for pests to get through.
Once pests have entered the home they won’t hesitate to breed and multiply extremely quickly, making them very hard to get rid of. You may have to deal with termites, carpenter ants, mosquitoes, silverfish, spiders, or multiple pests and infestations before your home can be considered healthy again.
If you’d like to avoid a serious insect or rodent infestation you should deal with your damaged concrete walls ASAP!
A Decrease In The Value of Your Home
You may not think the value of your home is too important if you’re not planning on selling it, but it will go against it if you ever decide to sell. Foundation problems and the issues that come with them could cost a new owner several thousand to repair them. A third party home inspection will reveal the nature of the issue to them, and this is before a transaction is complete.
Once foundation damage is revealed, it’s unlikely people will be interested in buying your home. If they are still interested in buying, then they are going to want a substantial amount off the price to take into account the money and time they will spend to repair the foundation themselves.
Keeping the value of your home high means staying vigilant when you notice foundation problems and the issues that come alongside it.
A Steady Increase In Your Utility Bills
Foundation problems usually mean that your home is no longer airtight or properly insulated. This means that the cracks, crevices, and warps in structural features can cause humid air to be pulled upwards, and in turn this can make it difficult for you to ensure your home is a comfortable temperature at all times.
Being able to control the temperature of your home is key to your comfort, so you’ll probably find yourself messing with it a lot more and ending up paying for it with your utility bills! As you may also have to deal with draughts when there are foundation problems, you will continue to struggle until you get the issues fixed.
No Opportunity To DIY
Of course, serious foundation problems require professional help, but in some cases, if a problem is identified early enough then you may be able to make some changes by yourself.
For example, drainage problems, which are a common cause of underground soil saturation, can often be addressed by adding length to existing gutters or rearranging downspouts to empty in different locations. Doing this yourself will mean effectively redirecting water flow away from the home and avoiding many of the problems we have mentioned here.
Of course, if you are already experiencing certain issues them having your concrete foundations assessed by a professional is the only way forward.
Staying On Top of Preventative Maintenance
Never underestimate the power of prevention when it comes to keeping your foundation problems intact. Make sure you have your foundation evaluated by a professional the second you think there could be trouble. Waiting until there are clear signs of damage could cost you so much more money and damage the home you love devastatingly!
Damage is not always visible to the naked eye, though, so make sure you keep an eye on the more subtle signs of damage. These issues won’t get better on their own, so ensure you take protective action before it gets worse and make it a priority! At this point, you should be convinced enough to begin searching for ‘concrete foundation repair near me!’
Get In Touch With Debuck Construction Today
If you need a reliable, expert concrete contractor to help you fix your foundation problems, the Debuck Construction team can help you! Give the team a call today and we can give you a no-obligation quote and set up a consultation.
We understand how important the foundation of your home is, and we’ll make sure we get everything back to the way it should be with minimal disruption to your home life. We hope to hear from you soon!